Sienna Fasel wrote -
We'll be working through the non-profit GRID Alternatives, where volunteers raise money to cover the cost of solar panels for families who are unable to make this initial payment, and thus are unable to reap the environmental and financial benefits of solar energy. GRID believes the transition to clean, renewable energy involves everyone, and hopes to make renewable energy technology and job training accessible to underserved communities.
We will install the solar panels ourselves, with the aid of a GRID representative. Our two teams of 8 University of Michigan students will be working in a reservation community and will be camping on the property throughout the week, so inevitably we will be working closely with the families we are serving! This will be the third year University of Michigan has participated, and the first year we have sent two teams!
Though each member has been individually fundraising, our two teams are collectively charged to raise $10,000 ($5,000 each team). This will cover the solar panels, installation, training, and additional programming for the five days we spend on the reservation outside of San Diego. Additional group costs include plane tickets, van rental, light groceries for the meals that are not provided, and lodging for the two nights we're not at the reservation. We are fortunate to have received awards totaling to $250 from the East Quad and Couzens Residence Hall Councils! However, accounting for all costs, it is still over $1,000 for each person. We're so excited about this opportunity that many of us are paying for our own plane tickets (with cheapest round trips found for $473), and contributing some personal cash or money received as gracious holiday gifts. We're trying our best within our own networks of family and friends, but we still need some help! Every donation counts and will contribute to necessary costs, and we are very appreciative of each gift.